Leinster to vote on opening door to Galway minor and U21’s

The Leinster Council will vote next month on whether to allow Galway’s minor and U21 hurling teams into the province following Wednesday night’s presentation from leading Tribe officials seeking full integration.

Galway County Board chairman Noel Treacy, secretary John Hynes and treasurer Bernie O’Connor were invited to attend this week’s provincial council meeting, intimating a strong desire to see Galway hurling move “lock, stock, and barrel” into Leinster.

The Galway delegation were optimistic a vote would be taken on the night to rubber-stamp the county’s increased future involvement in the province, but one Leinster delegate requested the decision be delayed until next month to allow counties sufficient time to discuss the issue.

Moreover, the demand of Galway top brass for a seat on the Leinster Council was unanimously shot down.

The Tribesmen first competed in the Leinster SHC in 2009, annexing the Bob O’Keeffe Cup in 2012.

“Despite all the speculation and despite all the agendas that different people had been pushing over the last number of months and years, the first time Galway officials intimated to the Leinster Council executive they wanted to enter the Leinster minor and U21 competitions was three weeks ago at a meeting in Athlone,” revealed council chairman John Horan.

“At the meeting on Wednesday it was agreed they would be allowed compete in the 2015 Leinster intermediate championship. The Galway officials did also request a seat on the Leinster Council. We are not, however, the League of Nations.

“Counties felt it wasn’t right Galway have a vote concerning competitions in which they did not compete.”

Six-time All-Ireland-winning minor manager Mattie Murphy warned against increased Galway involvement in the province back in August, claiming it was an act of “unconditional surrender” entering the Leinster SHC in 2009.

Galway chairman Noel Treacy says full Leinster integration “is in the best interests of the county”. The executive reached unanimous agreement last February to seek entry into Leinster at minor and U21 level, opting not to progress the matter until the conclusion of the inter-county season.

“Wednesday was our third time meeting with Leinster officials over the last two years, but it was our first time attending a Leinster Council meeting.

“This was a county board decision to seek our minor and U21 teams move into Leinster. We want to have our two feet in Leinster.

“We want to be in there lock, stock and barrel.”

Twenty-eight people will vote at next month’s meeting as to whether or not full Galway integration into Leinster is accepted — two delegates from each of the 12 counties and four top-table officials.

Meanwhile, Turloughmore were last night thrown out of the Galway hurling championship for fielding an ineligible player in their group game against Beagh last month. Beagh will now play Ardrahan in the senior quarter-final next weekend.


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